With the 2015 climate talks in Paris growing ever closer shoots of creativity, innovative policy solutions, are starting to appear. The Paris agreement must signal a jolt to the system, a reorientation that puts us on a path where all can participate in shaping a low carbon economy. One idea that’s certainly caught our attention is IDDRI’s proposal for governments to commit to ‘phasing down net anthropogenic GHG emissions to zero by 2050’.
Although governments have committed to keeping temperatures to a 2°C limit of warming this has not yet translated into a quantified policy goal that achieves the stabilisation of GHG emissions necessary to do so. This goal presents an opportunity to create a mandate for all – governments, public and private sectors and citizens, to deliver the 2°C goal.
Historically the UN Climate Talks have struggled, held back by short-term political interests and constrained administrative processes – notably the participation of the US. This proposal deftly accommodates these challenges, creating a more flexible space for short-term ambition whilst aligning economies and communities toward a long-term solution for climate change.
The door is open for innovative policy solutions and time will tell what shoots begin to bloom, enabling the politics of possibility inside the UNFCCC.